Commonly Asked Questions
Regularly Asked Questions and Answers
How does St Chad’s Patchway Primary know if children need extra help?
The school’s system for regularly observing, assessing and recording the progress of all children is used to identify children who may have additional needs. Children may also be identified as having SEN through a variety of ways including the following:
- • Liaison with previous school or pre-schools
- • Early Years Foundation Stage Profile
- • Progress measured against the assessment focuses in literacy and maths
- • National Curriculum descriptors for the end of a key stage
- • Progress measured against the P level descriptors
- • Standardised screening and assessment tools
- • Observations of behavioural, emotional and social development
- • An existing Statement of SEN
- • Assessments by a specialist service, such as educational psychology
- • Another school or LA which has identified or has provided for additional needs.
- • Concerns raised by Parent
- • Through termly Pupil Progress Meetings held between the teachers / SENCO and teaching assistants
- • Concerns raised by teacher for example behaviour or self-esteem is affecting child’s learning and well being
- • Health diagnosis through paediatrician/doctor
Based on the school’s observations and assessment data and following a discussion between the class teacher, SENCo and parent, the child may be recorded as needing either:
• differentiated curriculum provision within the class or in small groups outside of the classroom for a set period.
• additional support through Wave 2 provision
• additional support through Wave 3 provision.
What should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?
Talk to us – firstly contact your child’s class teacher. If you require more information contact our SENCO or Head Teacher. We pride ourselves on building positive relationships with parents. We are open and honest with parents and hope that they are able to do the same with us.
How will St Chad’s Patchway School staff support my child?
Our SENCO will closely monitor all provision and progress of any child requiring additional support across the school. The class teacher will oversee, plan and work with each child with SEND in their class to ensure that progress in every area is made. There may be a Teaching Assistant (TA) working with your child either individually or as part of a group, if this is seen as necessary by the class teacher. The regularity of these sessions will be explained to parents when the support starts.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?
All work within class is pitched at an appropriate level so that all children are able to access according to their specific needs. Typically this might mean that in a lesson there would be three or more different levels of work set for the class, however on occasions this can be individually differentiated. The benefit of this type of differentiation is that all children can access a lesson and learn at their level.
How do we know if the support or strategies used have had an impact?
In school we will often use EP’s (Education Plan) to set targets and review progress. We can use these targets to monitor pupil’s progress academically against national/age expected levels and update or adjust the EP. This may involve updating targets into smaller steps or using a different approach to ensure progress is made. Children may move off of the SEN register when they have ‘caught up’ or made sufficient progress. Parents are involved in all EP review meetings.
How will I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?
The class teacher will meet with parents at least twice a year (this could be as part of Parents’ evening) to discuss your child’s needs, support and progress. For further information the class teacher and SENCo are available to discuss support in more detail.
We offer an open door policy where you are welcome any time to make an appointment to meet with either the class teacher or SENCo and discuss how your child is getting on. We can offer advice and practical ways that you can help your child at home. We believe that your child’s education should be a partnership between parents and teachers, therefore we aim to keep communication channels open and communicate regularly, especially if your child has complex needs.
• Your child may have an EP in place and therefore the targets set are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time scaled) targets with the expectation that the child will achieve the target by the time it is reviewed.
• Your child may be involved with a number of external agencies (such as a community paediatrician, social care, speech and language therapist etc) and your child may be given a SAF (Standard Assessment Form) with targets that are similar to that of an EP. The SAF will be reviewed appropriately using a Team Around the Child (TAC) meeting, where all external agencies involved will be invited to discuss strategies and the next steps for supporting your child’s development.
• If your child has complex SEND they may have an EHCP (Education Health and Care Plan), which means that a formal Annual Review will take place to discuss your child’s progress and a report will be written. This can also be done at a six monthly interim review if changes to circumstances occur or concerns arise. Previously to September 2014, Statements of Statutory Education were given to children with complex SEND and these will eventually all be moved to an EHCP. This will be done as part of the review process.
How will my child be able to contribute their views?
We value and celebrate each child being able to express their views on all aspects of school life. This is usually carried out through the School Council which has an open forum for any issues or viewpoints to be raised. Children who have EPs (Education Plans) have the opportunities to discuss their targets with their class teacher. If your child has an EHCP or statement their views will be obtained before the annual review of the EHCP or statement.
What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?
We are an inclusive school, we welcome and celebrate diversity. All staff appreciate the importance of children having high self-esteem in order to achieve positive well-being. Here at St Chad’s Primary we are committed to our own values and ensure pupils are able to develop in a caring, fair and understanding environment. The class teacher has overall responsibility for the pastoral, medical and social care of every child in their class, therefore this would be the parents’ first point of contact. If further support is required the class teacher can liaise with the SENCo for further advice and support.
This may involve working alongside outside agencies such as;
• Health and Social Services, and/or the Behaviour Support Team.
• The school has a Parent Link Worker who works with parents and the school to ensure a smooth transition between school and home.
• The school has a policy regarding the administration and managing of medicines on the school site. Parents need to contact the school’s receptionist to discuss this and if agreed complete a form: ‘Parental Agreement for School to Administer Medicines’. This may include medicines for life threatening conditions or required for a long term illness such as asthma and diabetes. In such cases a ‘Care Plan’ may be put in place according to the directions of the School Nurse.
• School will generally not take responsibility for other medicines such as cough medicines, however we may be able to administer prescribed medicines following discussions with parents and a consensual agreement.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by St. Chad’s Patchway Primary School?
Our SENCo is fully qualified and accredited with the National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator.
As a school we work closely with any external agencies that we feel are relevant to individual children’s needs within our school including: Inclusion Support, Behaviour Support, Health including: School Nurse, General Practitioners, CAMHS (Child and Adult Mental Health), Paediatricians, OT (Occupational Therapist) and the Speech & Language Therapy service. We also work very closely with Social Care and the Education psychologists. Should your child require any form of involvement with an outside agency then the school would immediately inform you and obtain permission from parents to pursue any kind of professional intervention.
What are the Governors responsibilities?
We have an SEN Governor. It is their job to regularly meet with the SENCo and will update the governing body on changes, needs in school and current concerns. The Governors are then also able to agree priorities for spending within the SEN budget with the overall aim that all children receive the support they need in order to make progress.
How will my child be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
All children are included in all parts of the school curriculum and we aim for all children to be included on school trips. We will provide the necessary support to ensure that this is successful. A risk assessment is carried out prior to any off site activity to ensure everyone’s health & safety will not be compromised. In the unlikely event that it is considered unsafe for a child to take part in an activity, then alternative activities which will cover the same curriculum areas will be provided in school.
How accessible is the school environment?
St Chad’s Patchway Primary is situated on one floor and can be fully accessed by a wheelchair. We also have a disabled washroom and toilet. Any other resources needed to ensure ease of access and safety for all may be assessed by the Occupational Therapist and Physiotherapy.
The school is able to liaise with EMTAS (Ethnic Minority and Traveller Achievement Service) who can at times assist us in supporting our families with English as an additional language.
How will St Chad’s Patchway Primary School prepare and support my child in joining the school and transferring to secondary school?
We encourage all new children to visit the school prior to starting where they will be shown around the site and any concerns can be addressed. For children with SEND we would encourage further visits to assist with the acclimatisation of the new surroundings. Some pupils with high anxiety and communication difficulties find it beneficial to have a ‘Social Story’ to ease transition. Schools/parents may also feel the need to arrange several transition meetings between the school and child to help alleviate pupil concerns.
At St. Chad’s we work closely with our ‘feeder’ secondary schools and will work together to plan an individually tailored transition programme for more vulnerable pupils. We ensure that all relevant paper work is passed on and all needs discussed and understood. If your child has complex needs then an Educational Health and Care Plan of SAF review may be used as a transition meeting during which we will invite staff from both schools to attend.
How are resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?
We ensure that all children who have SEND needs are met to the best of the school’s ability with the funds available. We will often allocate Teaching Assistants, who are funded by the school’s SEN Budget, to deliver programmes designed to meet groups of children’s needs. We also use the SEN Budget to provide recommended resources by external agencies. The budget is allocated on a needs basis.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?
The class teacher alongside the SENCo will discuss the child’s needs and what support would be appropriate for each child. Different children will require different levels of support in order to bridge the gap to achieve good progress. This will be through on-going discussions with the parents.
What support is there for improving behaviour, attendance and avoiding exclusion?
As a school we have a very positive approach to all types of behaviour and have established a clear reward system that is followed by all staff and pupils. If a child has behaviour difficulties, then an EP (Education Plan) with a focus on improving behaviour is written alongside the child and parents. This is to identify specific issues, teach strategies to support the behaviour, put relevant support in place and set targets.
Attendance of every child is monitored on a daily basis by the School Office and a dedicated Attendance member of staff. Lateness and absence are reported to the Head Teacher and are monitored closely. Good attendance is actively encouraged throughout the whole school and is rewarded on a termly basis as is improvement in attendance. Families that struggle with attendance and lateness will be asked to meet the Head Teacher and the Educational Welfare Officer to discuss how to improve attendance.
Who can I contact for further information?
Your main point of contact would always be the class teacher and then following this you may be asked to speak to the school SENCo.
You can find South Gloucestershire Council’s Local Offer at the following address; www.southglos.gov.uk/localoffer
Who should I contact if I am considering whether my child should join St. Chad’s Patchway Primary School?
In this instance, you should contact the School Office to arrange a meeting with the Head Teacher (Mr Brown) to discuss your child’s needs.
How is the local offer reviewed?
This local offer will be reviewed annually to reflect the changing needs of the children who join and are developing in our school. Part of this review process will involve contributions from the parents. All parents of children with SEN are invited to join the Parent Forum meetings to help us match the local offer to the needs of their child.